GRCC In the News, 9-16-15

GRCC Honors Three With Excellence In Education Awards

Sept. 11, 2015; Grand Rapids Times

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Grand Rapids Community College recently honored three employees for their service both on and off campus.

Dicey door-to-door meat company may have hit the road

Sept. 15, 2015; WOOD TV

WHITE CLOUD, Mich. (WOOD) — A door-to-door meat sales company was getting so much heat for its sales practices that it may have hit the trail and left Michigan behind.

… Target 8 then turned the products over to two experts for their opinions. Bruce Konowalow is dean of The Culinary Institute of Michigan at Baker College in Muskegon. Sean Marr teaches at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College and is also the chef at Seasons Gastropub at the Muskegon Country Club.

Things to do on Friday, September 18

Sept. 15, 2015; MLive

… Sep. 18 GRCC Music Department Faculty Recital: Royce Auditorium, 24 Ransom Ave. NE, Grand Rapids. 7:30 pm.

Information sessions feature Lean Champion alumni

If you have ever considered becoming a Lean Champion, you will want to attend one of these short informational sessions!

You will:

  • hear from Lean Champion alumni about the benefits of this program.
  • learn the value of this program to you and your organization.
  • see how Lean can be applied to both service and production environments.

Here’s the schedule:

  • 4-5 p.m. September 25, featuring Brandee VanVuuren, of TANDEM365; Joel Elsenbroek, of Sunset Manor; and Dan Keyes, of GRCC Workforce Training.
  • 7:45-8:45 a.m. September 30, featuring David Seabrook, of Micron Manufacturing; Joel Elsenbroek, of Sunset Manor; and Dan Keyes, of GRCC Workforce Training.
  • 7:45-8:45 a.m. October 2, featuring Brad Brown, of the Grand Rapids Fire Department; Joel Elsenbroek, of Sunset Manor; and Dan Keyes, of GRCC Workforce Training.
  • 7:45-8:45 a.m. October 6, featuring Brad Brown, of the Grand Rapids Fire Department; David Seabrook, of Micron Manufacturing; and Mary Hofstra, of GRCC Workforce Training.
  • 4-5 p.m. October 13, featuring Brad Brown, of the Grand Rapids Fire Department; Brandee VanVuuren, of TANDEM365; and Mary Hofstra, of GRCC Workforce Training.

To sign up for a free information session, click here.

Cross country team competes in Knight Invite

A week after the Raiders harriers faced off against six opponents – including two MCCAA schools – at Hope College, the team toed the line for the 30 team mega-invitational known as the Calvin College Knight Invite.

The ladies got things started on a high note in the 5k race as all three Raiders set either a season best or all-time personal best time. Nikki Gewirtz led the ranks with a collegiate best time of 22:56, good for 271st of the 319 female runners – and 9th of all MCCAA runners. Not to be outdone, Alicia Geene set an all-time personal best. Her time of 24:53 broke her four-year old personal best by nearly a minute! Geene’s race did not even earn her the honors of biggest improvement on the team… Those honors went to Alex Pierson who ran – get this – a 6 minute and 19 second improvement over her previous season best, even pulling away from two competitors in the final half-mile!

Aquinas College – with its top-5 runners all within ten seconds – pulled away from host Calvin for the team win, despite Calvin’s Lauren Strohbehn taking home top individual honors with a fine time of 17:54.

Last week the men placed a mere 11 points behind NJCAA top-20 ranked Muskegon CC. With the additional excitement of the ladies race, the men were primed to perform their best. Leading the Raider charge – each with a personal best time of two minutes over the 8k distance – were freshman Isaiah Fox (28:03) and Kirk Dickson (28:25). Moving closer to the top pack was fellow freshman Carter VerSluys, who set a three minute PR at 29:00. Last week’s number four runner – Jose Lozada – fell going down “Lumkes Hill” only 8 minutes into the race and withdrew from the race with a sprained ankle. That added pressure to Denis Martinez-Ramos and Brad Heintzelman – who responded with true grit by each running over three and a half minutes faster than at the season opener at Jackson College. With the squad shooting 100% for personal or season best times, the Raiders finished 24th of 30 teams, but more impressively were the top finishing MCCAA school in the race (Oakland CC and Jackson College also competed). That brings the men’s team record against other MCCAA schools to 4-1.

Also of note were the performances of several unattached runners, who are training with the teams but running individually this season: 2014 Raider MVR Brett Slayton ran a lifetime best 27:50 while Jessica Fraly ran a 5k personal best of 20:17. Both of these runners hope to officially join the 2016 XC team.

Host Calvin placed four runners in the top-15 to take top honors in the men’s race by only two points over Ohio Northern. Olympic trials qualifier and former Cornerstone national champion Zach Ripley ran away from the field to finish over 30 seconds ahead of second place in 24:21.

Next up for the runnin’ Raiders is a solid month of grueling training before heading to two key meets at Lansing CC and Muskegon CC, October 9 and 16, respectively.

Van & Marinus Swets Travel Award 1st Place Winner shares her excessive Ice Cream Adventure

From Sara Dorer:

My whole family sends thanks to the Swets family for creating such a fun scholarship opportunity for employees. My kids still can’t believe I won this opportunity that allowed them to eat ice cream (excessively) this summer.

It quite literally took us all summer to complete our adventure, but we did it! Using the results from the MLIVE article naming their Top 10 ice cream locations in MI, we set off to discover our own. While the results are in (and we have the pounds to prove it), I also sense this could be an on-going journey that carries over into other summers (since we simply couldn’t try every recommended location.)

We saw areas of MI we never would have explored, such as Vicksburg and Nashville. We learned a lot about MI made ice cream. Ultimately, we had a lot of fun, a lot of laughs, and made great memories. Our current top favorites include Moomers in Traverse City, Pekadill’s in Whitehall and Apple Knockers in Vicksburg. We found it hard to pick a top favorite, as after awhile you are comparing ice cream taste/flavor, to selection/variety, to location and ambiance, etc….making it very hard to pick just one.

Thanks again to you, the Foundation and the Swets family!

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Mathematics Seminar to cover graph theory

The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its first Mathematics Seminar of the 2015-2016 academic year on Wednesday, September 23, 3:00 – 4:00 PM in 102 Cook. Our speaker, Sang Lee, will discuss topics from graph theory. The title and abstract of his talk are below.

Sang’s talk will focus on the concepts and applications of graph labeling. A working knowledge of arithmetic and a desire to learn more about mathematics are the only things needed to appreciate the ideas to be presented, so, as always, everyone is welcome to attend!

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

Graph Labeling

The concepts of graph labeling began about 50 years ago, and have been research topics for many mathematicians all over the world. While there are many different graph labeling techniques, in this seminar talk we will focus mainly on the three most popular graph labelings: a vertex labeling called graceful labeling, and edge labelings called magic and super-magic labeling. We will also investigate how these graph labelings are applied to graph decompositions and well-known magic squares.

IIPD Grants: Funding Opportunity

The deadline for the submission of grant applications for the Instructional Improvement & Professional Development (IIPD) Grants program is 4:30 p.m., October 2, 2015. Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications electronically. The IIPD application packet and IIPD Guidelines are available in the GRCC Internal Grants area of the Grants Office website at

Please note that applications must include a Supervisor’s Approval form, a budget form and budget documentation. If you have any questions about IIPD grants, please contact Judith Larsen, Director, Grants and Resource Development Department, at 234-3910 or Good luck!